Sister Katarina Schuth, O.S.F., Ph.D.

 Sister Katarina Schuth, O.S.F., Ph.D.

Presentation: “Looking Forward: Ministry Preparation for Priests
in the Church of the 21st Century”

Ministry in the life of the Church during the past half century has evolved and developed according to the conditions of the people being served and the culture in which it exists. Since Vatican II, awareness of the close connection between Church and society has called forth creative response from priests and others serving the needs of the faithful. This talk examines the requirements of preparation for priests who will serve the Church as it exists in reality these days and also take into account the impact of secular culture on the Church today.  Among the questions to be explored are: What are the realities of the present day and what changes are ongoing or likely to affect ministry in the future?   What is happening to the strength of Catholic identity and church attendance in recent years? On the whole, is polarization a factor among parishioners, priests, and lay ministers? What shifts in parish life have taken place recently?

Biography: Sister Katarina Schuth, O.S.F., Ph.D.

Sr. Katarina Schuth has been a member of the Sisters of St. Francis, Rochester, MN, from 1960 to the present. Her career as a faculty member in higher education spans four decades. Since 1991 she held an Endowed Professorship for the Social Scientific Study of Religion at The Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity at the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN. In 2017 she retired from teaching, but continues to do research, write, and give presentations. Along with numerous articles, she has written six books on church life and well over 100 articles and book chapters. Her most recent book, Seminary Formation: Recent History, Current Circumstances, and New Directions, published in 2016 by Liturgical Press, covers the last thirty years of education and formation for ministry. She also authored Priestly Ministry in Multiple Parishes, published by the same press in 2006, for which she surveyed and interviewed a 1000 priests who are pastoring more than one parish.